Risk: The Reboot

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When I was 22 I moved to a small town in Maine where I knew nobody. My intention was to isolate myself the better to focus on my goal of writing the Great American Novel. Instead I focused on playing a lot of Risk on my Mac Classic. Wow, did I play a lot of Risk. I developed very intense feelings about Kamchatka.

Eventually I had to delete Risk. Even then I did not subsequently write the Great American Novel, or any great novel of any nationality.

I haven’t played a lot of board-type games since then, except for a fitful Settlers of Catan habit. But a few days ago a package landed outside my office containing a sleek black box labeled Risk: Black Ops. This turned out to be a revamped version of the classic game, different in three major ways:

  1. Everything is very black and serious and sexed-up-looking. You can see some pix at Gamers with Jobs. Also for some reason it smells kinda funny. That should dissipate with use.
  2. There are now cities, and even capitals, as well as countries, and controlling them gives you better resources, i.e. basically more troops
  3. There are other ways to win besides total world domination. There are “objectives,” like “take over 4 cities in 1 turn,” and “control Europe,” and “control 2 enemy capitals” and such. Objectives come in major and minor flavors. Complete enough of them and a winner is you!

There are lots more minor wrinkles, but that’s the basic idea. Anyway, it looks like a stylish and well-conceived rethink of a beloved classic, and I’m stoked to play. On to Kamchatka!